Full Edition or go to 

Locals Guide To BarbadosVisitors Guide To BarbadosBarbados FunBarbados Business
Totally Barbados Business Economy Tourism

Search our Site

National Initiative for Service Excellence - NISE
National Initiative for Service Excellence - NISE


Barbados Tourism

The key elements of Barbados' tourism product are its:
Solid historical and cultural legacy
Political stability
Friendly people
Varied entertainment
Natural physical attributes

Tourism, the main financial prop of the Barbados economy, has begun to feel the effects of the world economic slowdown.

The major markets for the Barbados tourist industry are:

United States
Continental Europe

Preliminary data - covering the first 10 months of 2008 - show that long stay visitors fell by about 2% last year. That's in contrast to an average increase of 2.9% over the previous five years.

Visitors from both the key UK market and the USA were down 2.3%, as contracting airline schedules reduced airlift and disposable incomes plummeted in the face of the international recession.

The cruise sector performed slightly better in 2008, recording an overall decline of 0.1%, after a 15.4% increase in passenger arrivals in the first half of the year. In 2007, the total number of cruise passengers calling at Barbados was up 14.3%.

The 2008 cruise sector fall off has been linked to fewer ships calls, due to a major legal battle between Puerto Rico (the main hub for Barbados traffic) and one cruise line and to increased competition from the Mediterranean, according to the Barbados Central Bank.

Tourism typically contributes about 15% of the island's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) - the total value of all the goods and services.

Provisional Barbados Central Bank figures indicate that in 2007, the sector earned about $172 million out of GDP that was estimated at $1.15 billion. By comparison, manufacturing accounted for about $64 million and agriculture, including sugar, about $50 million.

In 2004 tourism's contribution to the GDP was estimated at 12.4%.

Driving tourism's performance has been an ever increasing number of visitors to this 166-square-mile island, with nearly 1.2 million coming in 2007.

The number of tourists - long stay visitors - who came in 2007 amounted to 574,533, compared with 616,354 cruise passengers who popped in for a day or less. The increase over the 2006 performance was 14.3% for the cruise sector and 2.1% for the long stays.

The real value of tourism's contribution to Barbados is in providing foreign exchange, economic activity and employment. For the first quarter of 2006, the Barbados tourism sector was responsible for the employment of 13,000 people.

Accommodation facilities in Barbados include a wide range of hotels, apartments, luxury villas, guest houses, cottages and beach houses.

Last year the Barbados Tourism Authority (BTA), the statutory corporation, principally responsible for development of the sector, got a face lift, following the January 15th, 2008 change of government.

Celebrated Barbadian hotelier Ralph Taylor took over as BTA chairman. Taylor is chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Almond Resorts Inc. group (with properties in Barbados and St. Lucia) and is also chairman of the Caribbean Hotel Association Charitable Trust.

The BTA works closely with the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) which speaks for the private sector entities directly or indirectly involved in the sector.


Social Media Sharing

Invest Barbados
Invest Barbados

Barbados Newsletter

Join The Totally Barbados Newsletter


» Caribbean Tourism Organization CTO

Other Related Articles:
» Accommodation
» Beaches and Bays
» Economy
» Financial Sector
» Meet a Bajan
» People
» Shopping
» Travel


Please read our Disclaimer of Warranties & Legal Agreement. Privacy Policy
2015 Totally Barbados / Brecal Inc. (246) 572-2420. All rights reserved
140 B Durants Fairways, Oistins, Christ Church, BB17097, Barbados